February 14, 2013 - Today, the Center for Constitutional Rights and the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) sent a letter to Secretary of State John Kerry calling on the United States government to move from rhetoric to action and address the human rights violations prevailing in Bahrain, one of the largest recipient of U.S. military aid.
Specifically, the letter calls on the U.S. government to:
- Call for the release of all prisoners of opinion;
- Suspend and ban exports of tear gas and crowd control material to Bahrain;
- Suspend all technical cooperation programmes with the Prosecutor’s Office and the Ministry of Justice, until sentences and trials that are contrary to international human rights standards have been reviewed and prisoners of opinion have been released;
- Support independent human rights NGOs operating in Bahrain.
Additionally, the two organizations urge the U.S. government to take action at the multilateral level and ensure in particular that a resolution will be adopted at the Human Rights Council on the human rights situation in Bahrain during its next session in March 2013. Such a resolution should:
- Firmly condemn the human rights violations
- Request the immediate release of all political activists, students, teachers, doctors, workers, human rights defenders and individuals detained, charged with and sentenced for alleged violations related to the rights of expression, peaceful assembly and association ;
- Establish an international monitoring mechanism mandated with monitoring the implementation of the recommendations of the BICI and of the Universal Periodic Review of Bahrain;
- Request the full respect and protection of fundamental freedoms and in particular, freedom of expression, opinion and peaceful gathering;
- Urge the government of Bahrain to: conduct independent, effective and transparent investigations (by an independent body outside the Public Prosecutor’s Office) into all allegations of torture and other ill-treatment, and make the results public ; and bring to justice anyone at any level of the chain.
To read the full letter click here.